Closing Soon, Opening Soon

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The next couple weeks will see the closing of two great exhibitions in the Toronto area; go see them soon if you can. Land|Slide: Possible Futures (closing October 14) is an ambitious curatorial project which transforms the historical buildings of the Markham Museum into an engaging and interactive contemporary art park. While beautiful by day, we’d recommend an early evening visit to experience some of the more subtle installations’ full effects. Favourites include Deirdre Logue’s multisensory, multichannel video installation, Euphoria’s Hiccups, which activates the walls, floor, and countertops of the Honey House, and Frank Havermans’ Untitled high-tension intervention which parasitizes the Strickler Barn to unsettling effect (both pictured below). Above, Martindale, Myers, and MacKinnon’s “refined and enriched” intervention within the Burkholder carriage house is a thought-provoking commentary on high art consumption.

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Also closing in October (the 27th, to be exact) is Ai Weiwei: According to What? at the AGO. Ignore all the hype around his political status and go be amazed by his deft handling of conceptual form. Utilizing historically and culturally charged raw materials such as Han Dynasty urns, wood salvaged from destroyed Qing Dynasty temples, Pu’er tea from southwest China, and twisted rebar from the devastating 2008 earthquake in Sichuan province (all shown in the artworks pictured below), Weiwei fashions poetic testaments to both the passage and persistence of history and memory. Embedded within his artwork and actions is a deeply felt sense of beauty, empathy, humour, and loss which transforms the political into the personal, speaking directly to the heart. Do believe the hype around his art.

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Opening to the public the same weekend that Ai Weiwei closes (Friday to Sunday, October 25–27th) is Canada’s biggest (and only) international contemporary art fair, Art Toronto. Last year we enjoyed the fair’s focus on new art from Asia, as well as a strong showing by contemporary painters from Canada. This year we’re looking forward to a rich program of events including talks by Tom Eccles, Executive Director of the Center of Curatorial Studies at Bard College, and Julia Dault, a Toronto-born, Brooklyn-based artist whose painting, New Wave, was acquired by the AGO at last year’s fair. Also of interest is Thom Sokoloski’s interactive installation, ALL THE ARTISTS ARE HERE which will showcase the diversity of artists and artistic practice represented within this year’s fair.

Interested in attending? TYPOLOGY has two pairs of tickets to give away! One pair (value $40) goes out this week to a randomly selected winner among anyone who comments or emails us in response to this post. Tell us something about yourself – what artists you’re looking at, which galleries you go to, or what exhibition you’ve seen lately. Or just tell us you want the tickets! Emails to info (at) typology (dot) ca or comments posted below, or to our Facebook, and Twitter pages over the next 7 days will be included in the draw. One entry per person, please, and we’ll post the winner next Thursday, October 17th when we’ll also run the giveaway for the second pair of tickets. Good luck!


Land|Slide: Possible Futures, curated by Janine Marchessault, is on view at the Markham Museum through October 14th.

Ai Weiwei: According to What?, organized jointly by the Mori Art Museum and the Art Gallery of Ontario, is on view at the AGO through October 27th.

Art Toronto will be at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre from October 25–28th (opening night preview October 24).


images, from top to bottom:

All Purpose (exterior view), Sean Martindale, Lisa Myers and Yvan MacKinnon

Euphoria’s Hiccups (three installation details), Deirdre Logue

Untitled (exterior and interior details), Frank Havermans

Ai Weiwei: According to What? installation view featuring Kippe, 2006, made from Tieli wood salvaged from demolished Qian Dynasty temples

According to What? installation view featuring the photo series Dropping a Han Dynasty Urn, 1995/2009, and Coloured Vases, 2007–2010, made by dipping Han Dynasty vases in industrial paint

Teahouse, 2011, made from compressed and loose Pu’er tea leaves, Ai Weiwei

According to What? installation view featuring Straight, 2008–2012, made from 38 tonnes of painstakingly straightened rebar salvaged from the 2008 Sichuan earthquake, and Names of the Student Earthquake Victims Found by the Citizens’ Investigation, 2008–2011 (on wall), installed together with Remembrance, 2010 (audio recording of people around the world reading the names).

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